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Do not be misled by the title; this collection of essays by Ann Patchett is not exclusively about marriage, happy or otherwise. Rather, it is an autobiography of sorts, detailing: love and relationships, yes, but also the craft of writing; friendships human and not; and the expectations and obligations of family. My favorite pieces in the book both happen to describe Patchett's relationship with elderly women in her life--one her cantankerous grandmother, and the other a 78-year-old nun named Sister Nena, who is moving into an apartment of her own for the very first time. Those familiar with Patchett's life and work will also enjoy reading about her bookstore in Tennessee, Parnassus Books, and catching a glimpse of Lucy Grealey. A very enjoyable read.— From Jill's Picks
“Readers familiar with Patchett's fiction, from The Patron Saint of Liars to Bel Canto and State of Wonder, treasure her imaginative and heartfelt stories. Truth & Beauty, her memoir of her friendship with Lucy Grealy, defines loyalty and friendship. Now, in this essay collection, she confirms what her readers have always known: we would love to be her neighbor, knowing that she would wash our mud-soaked clothes in her dry laundry room after a flood; we would share her heartbreak when her dog Rosie died; we would cheer her feisty dedication to uncensored reading and bookselling. The story of her happy marriage is one her fans will savor. Patchett deserves this joy.”
— Cheryl McKeon, Book Passage, San Francisco, CA
Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick
Blending literature and memoir, Ann Patchett, author of State of Wonder, Run, and Bel Canto, examines her deepest commitments--to writing, family, friends, dogs, books, and her husband--creating a resonant portrait of a life in This is the Story of a Happy Marriage.
This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage takes us into the very real world of Ann Patchett's life. Stretching from her childhood to the present day, from a disastrous early marriage to a later happy one, it covers a multitude of topics, including relationships with family and friends, and charts the hard work and joy of writing, and the unexpected thrill of opening a bookstore.
As she shares stories of the people, places, ideals, and art to which she has remained indelibly committed, Ann Patchett brings into focus the large experiences and small moments that have shaped her as a daughter, wife, and writer.